Posts by:

Jennifer Hartle

Jennifer Hartle

Guest Blogger

Postdoctoral Research Fellow, Stanford University

What’s Up With the Cans in Canned Food?

BPA-Free-canned-beans-2013Two years ago I wrote an impassioned post about the ideological issues of feeding the hungry with food known to be contaminated with the endocrine disrupting chemical Bisphenol-A (BPA). And because it’s the holiday season, I’d love to tell you about all the progress that has been made. But I’m sorry to say that we’re not much better off. Since this time, there has been no action by the U.S. government to ban the use of BPA from canned food. Meanwhile, there has been a growing need for food assistance programs that use this non-perishable food source. Although canned food has been completely replaced by alternative foods in my house, the thoughtful responses to my original post reminded me that canned food is an integral part of the emergency food system, not to be replaced any time soon. It also should not have to be replaced. Canned food can be an affordable, nutritious source of food.  Here’s what we know so far. Read More >

Canning the Cans in Food Drives

Each day, as I drop my daughter off at her pre-school, I am horrified to see the canned food drive bin in the threshold.

It is not that the bin itself is scary to me—although it is dressed up as a six-foot tall Thanksgiving turkey that says, “Feed me.” It is not all of the sodium and industrial ag products packed tightly in the can that’s upsetting me. What concerns me most, as a doctoral student researching environmental contaminants in the food system, is all of the BPA that has leached from those epoxy resin can linings into the food.  I read report after report confirming that, although we have a dearth of human epidemiological evidence on the health effects of BPA, we certainly have animal data that find BPA to be linked to many adverse health effects including endocrine disruption and carcinogenesis. Read More >